Looking Back and Forward from 2007 to 2008

Hard to believe I've been blogging for two years now. I started this journal about a month after my other, in-character one. Originally, it was just there to comment on friends, but I started posting one or two things on occasion. Now, as my brother said, "I'm a pretty good blogger." Or at least I do it fairly consistently and I've gotten a few compliments on letting everyone in on the trials and joys of my life.

This year is probably the year I started to really blogging on two of my major themes of life: writing and programming. I will, of course, blame the the other Dylan for getting me into writing about writing. After meeting with him at GenCon 2006, it really pushed me to finally take that step toward trying to be a "real" writer again instead of just hanging my hat on my one relatively minor success. I've been a lot of really cool writers in this last year and I'm pretty thankful for making that step. Now, I just have to follow their footsteps and get published again. On the programming/gaming side, I haven't really done much with networking, but I blog about it almost as much as my writing. Even if I occasionally give "too technical" details as more than one said. Oh well, just who I am.

The end of the year is the time when I look at my major projects for the year. I plan them ahead of time, sometimes even figure out when I'll work on it, but mainly it is a framework for my personal projects throughout the year. I also like to remember what I have succeeded at.

Probably the largest accomplishment this year is that I wrote a game. After my father taught me to program at the age of six, I've been trying to finish a computer game since. At the age of thirty-two, I actually got close to succeeding at that goal with CuteGod. Yeah, someone else came up with the design document and the graphics, but I actually sat down and started to write it. And I got it to a playable state. For something I've been struggling with for over twenty-six years, I think that is a major thing.

Following up, I'd have to say My Father's Bike and Case of the Morning Zombies. I manages to get a first draft on two novels this year, one that has had major significance in my life already even though it never got published and the other because I wrote it for NaNoWriMo.

Everything else was kind of minor compared to those: friends, games, and novels. In this next year, I have quite a few plans and it is going to be a very rough and packed year:

  • The Master Plan: This is the year where Fluffy and I finally get into the end of the plan. In the following year, I'm going to try finding a job in Iowa, move to Iowa, and start to have a family. This is the part that has terrified me for the last five years and it is finally time for it to happen.
  • College: I start college for my Masters in five days. Eight classes and eight 30+ page essays before I get it. Then the joys of deciding if I want to keep on going to finish up a doctorate, which I'm also considering.
  • Ponies Among Us: This game is due by April 2 and I'm hitting the struggle point. Only three more full months of working on it and I'm nowhere near the completion point or even the midway point for that project. Related to that is Kitteh Braik which is a proof-of-concept game that I'm suppose to have done by the end of January or thereabouts.
  • My Father's Bike: At this point, I think my dad knows that this book exists, but I don't think he knows what's really in it. I don't keep secrets in general, but I want to give it to him for his birthday in January 2009. So, I have to find a new way of organizing it and finally finish it and get it bound for him.
  • Case of the Morning Zombies: I want this story to succeed, so I need to edit it and clean it up. That way, I can start the submission grinder on it and hope that this one will also succeed.
  • Muddy Reflections and Wind, Bear, and Moon: I got some really good feedback on both of these novels, but I've been sitting on them. So, in the next couple of months, I need to polish them off and get them back out.
  • Somewhere in the middle of all this writing, I plan on writing another novel of course. It's initials are QoF, and the first draft is already done, but I want to polish it up and get it out. This is for my other byline.
  • Stories: I want to write 24 short stories this year. Half for each byline. This is including commissions, but I want to write six to publish directly on http://brokentypewriterpress.com/ and the other six for submissions. It was a really nice feeling to get Thomas the Baker published and I want to do it again.

And that is my goals this year. Some of them are huge, like the Master Plan, while others are relatively minor, but its going to be a very busy year for me. And it doesn't even talk about my Debian work or the games I run. It also doesn't talk about my web comic. I'm not sure how I'm going to juggle all of this, but at least I have a goal.

Obviously, I'm not planning on putting a progress bar for each one on my postings. That would be silly and they wouldn't change nearly enough, but I want to figure out something to poke me every time I post that I need to keep moving forward.

Character Builder (91%)
World Builder (2%)
Kitteh Braik (7%)
Case of the Morning Zombies (Edit #1, 0 of 37 chapters)